Geoffrey Bernas, M.D. was honored at the annual 2008 American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM) meeting as the recipient of the AOSSM Excellence in Research Award.
His research assessed how current rehabilitation techniques used in overhead athletes (following elbow ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction, also known as “Tommy John” surgery) affect gracilis tendon grafts.
Exercises incorporating valgus torque significantly increase graft strain. Dr. Bernas explained that “the goal was to define safe range of motion (ROM) after UCL reconstruction.”
Ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction is a surgical procedure in which a ligament in the medial elbow is replaced with a tendon from elsewhere in the body (forearm, hamstring, knee, or foot). It is a common procedure is among college and professional athletes.The surgery is named after baseball player Tommy John, a pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers who was the first professional athlete to successfully undergo the operation in 1974.